FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 30, 2014 Contact: Molly Toth, Legislative Aide to Rep.

Clyde (614) 466-2004 Adam Warren, Legislative Aide to Sen. Turner (614) 466-4583

Legislators Call on Husted to Hold Public Review and Comment Period for Early Voting Directive
Directive setting primary early vote hours may have been issued in violation of law
COLUMBUS—Today, State Rep. Kathleen Clyde (D-Kent) and State Sen. Nina Turner (D-Cleveland) released a letter they sent to Secretary of State Jon Husted on January 17 requesting explanation of the process by which Directive 2014-01 was issued. The directive, which established early voting hours for the May 2014 primary, appears to have been issued in violation of a law requiring public comment period. “In 2008, Speaker Husted passed a law that very clearly requires Secretary Husted to make directives available for public review and comment. He violated that law with his latest directive limiting early voting,” Rep. Clyde said. “Further, dozens of previously-issued directives are invalid because the public was not provided due time to review them and provide comment. My office requested last fall to be notified of proposed directives and comment opportunity but received no response, just like we have received no response to our recent letter.” The Ohio Revised Code establishes that the secretary of state may issue both permanent and temporary directives regarding election procedure. The secretary may only issue permanent directives more than 90 days before an election and must allow for public comment on the proposal. Temporary directives may only be issued fewer than 90 days before an election and remain in effect until 40 days following an election. These do not require public comment. Directive 2014-01 was issued 111 days before the May 6 primary—outside of the timeframe of a temporary directive—but no opportunity for public comment was provided. “Even if this directive was only intended to be temporary, it is unfortunate that Secretary Husted did not take the additional step of seeking public input on this important policy,” said Senator Turner. “Such input would certainly go a long way toward making our elections more transparent.” A copy of the January 17 correspondence is available here.

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